Life threatening viruses are nothing new. A lot of people were upset when the first case of Ebola was diagnosed in America, wondering how this could have happened and what more could have been done? The truth is Ebola and other pathogens have been among us for years.
These pathogens have survived any attempt to eradicate their existence because they can adapt to survive. Oftentimes these viruses are relevant only to animals, and it’s they jump from animals to human infection like Ebola and novel coronavirus did that the world wakes up and pays attention.
The 1918 influenza (colloquially known as Spanish flu) was an unusually deadly influenza pandemic, infecting 500 million people around the world. Probably 50 million, and possibly as high as 100 million (three to five percent of Earth’s population at the time) died, making it one of the deadliest epidemics in human history.
Ebola has been studied for decades. The reason behind these studies is that officials knew that one day Ebola would be a problem. This was known because you can’t predict and you can’t control pathogens. Just like the Hendra virus, there is not a one hundred percent certainty that the disease can’t lie dormant in a host only to resurrect itself to strike that person in the future.
Now, in 2020 another life threatening virus broke out in China and is spreading across the world.
The coronavirus is not something new either, they were first discovered in the 1960s. Coronaviruses are a group of viruses that cause respiratory infections which are typically mild including the common cold but rarer lethal forms like SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) and MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome). SARS infected over 8,000 people, about 10% of whom died. MERS infected over 2,468 people, 851 of which were fatal.
There is a lot of fear about these awful diseases and with good reason. Besides being potentially deadly, there is no cure for coronavirus or Ebola. Vaccines against Ebola have been approved in the United States but have not proved necessarily effective. Treatments and supportive efforts for Ebola as of 2019 are associated with improved outcomes.
Novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) does not yet have an effective medicine treatment or vaccine, though efforts to develop some are underway.
The key to keeping yourself and your loved ones safe from coronavirus and other pathogens is not to come down with them in the first place. To prevent infection, the WHO recommends regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, and avoiding close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.
Besides those very basic recommendations, if you find yourself in the midst of a pandemic, one of the biggest helps with that is to be prepared with appropriate protective gear for the time when you’ll need it.
You’ll also want a rehydration mix, proper eye protection, and protective clothing to prepare you to care for a sick family member.
It’s always best to have everything you need gathered together in one location – in one bag. Because when a crisis hits, it can sometimes be hard to think straight.
What goes on in your mind is survival. By having everything together, you’ll be able to act quickly. There are some basics that you need in order to survive, especially if you may have to be in a hot zone.
You’ll need a set of coveralls. This keeps contaminants from coming in contact with your clothing. You need the kind that come with a hood that has the elastic in it that can pull tight around your face. Don’t forget boot covers to protect you from contaminants.